She had no issue with anyone in the line at Starbucks listen to her telephone call about her rules for using Facebook.
Though none of us knew who she was speaking with on the other line of that call I am certain I wasn’t the only person to think it was a girlfriend.
Nor was I the only person who scrunched up my face at “if you know me biblically you are not going to be allowed on my friend list.”
It set off the couple behind me with her instructing her male companion to never friend women he was sleeping with.
“We always know when there is more than one of us in your life and all you do is piss us off.”
She saw me roll my eyes and leaned in, “we always check you out, even when we are not with you anymore, trust me.”
The lack of coffee, a long night and a proclivity for being unfiltered pushed me into responding.
“People say they do a lot of things they don’t do. They do a lot of things they don’t say and I don’t wear sweaters because other people are cold.”
My response made her male friend laugh.
“Now you done it. You asked for it.”
Engage Or Ignore
She managed to speak for a solid two days without taking a breath but the majority of what I heard sounded more like the adults on the Peanuts cartoons than English.
“Men always think they know more about women than they do. This is how you get into trouble.”
“Women like to think they know a lot. We just let you think you are the boss when we are really running the show.”
Did I know that was going to make her eyes bug out a bit?
Yeah, I am pretty sure I did but when I had to choose between engage or ignore it was clear that ignore was going to be the harder of the two options.
I didn’t have headphones on me and even if I did she wasn’t going to let me ignore her. I was going to have to leave the line and since I had already committed 10 minutes in it I was determined to make those moments mean something.
Coffee was going to be had.
“If that’s what you really think you probably are divorced and you are certainly not dating a woman who is younger than 39 because we don’t put up with the stuff that our mothers and older sisters do.”
I laughed and told her she was lucky some of my friends weren’t around.
“A bunch just turned 49 and they’d have a field day educating you.”
Her male friend groaned and asked why I had made things worse.
“She is pissed off now and you have fucked up my day.”
I laughed again and told him he fucked up his day when he agreed to go out with her.
She slung a few choice obscenities my way and told me we were lucky we were in line because her friend wouldn’t hesitate to show me how wrong I was.
I looked at him and said he better think carefully about who he spent his time with. “She is going to get you hurt and blame you for it. Hope she is worth it. I am done with you both, play time is over.”
“Do we really need to put up with being verbally battered in line? Do you care about providing a good customer experience?”
That served as encouragement for the manager and he walked over and asked us to just get along.
“Thank you Rodney King.”
No one responded to my whispered retort, but whether it was because they couldn’t hear or didn’t get the reference I cannot say.
My Rules For Facebook
My rules for Facebook are simple.
If I am willing to give you my hand or to ask for your there is a good chance I’ll be willing to be your Facebook friend.
That is not how I have always done it.
Like so many of you I started off differently and added people willy-nilly.
Ok, that is not entirely accurate but when I first joined I got tons of invitations from people from all parts of my life and accepted most.
I probably sent out a bunch like that too, but over time my perspective changed.
Facebook wasn’t a place for everyone I knew and while there had been good reason to try and have thousands of friends things changed.
I unfriended and removed people by the hundred and was removed by others.
Sometimes it was because I found their beliefs and thoughts to be shameful and abhorrent and sometimes because we really weren’t ever friends.
Without Facebook we’d never speak and even on Facebook we’d never engage so what was the point.
I didn’t wonder or worry about whether it included those who knew me biblically, which takes me back to that coffee line,
After I placed my order the barista told me that the woman with all of the rules was silly because she didn’t say what biblically meant.
“Unless you define whether you mean kissing or sex it is impossible to make a proper list.”
I smiled and nodded and thought that it must be useful to need such precision in a place where someone might order a coffee with medium beans, three shots, two sugars half stirred, a lemon twist and a pickle.
Coffee lady did make me think about my friends list and I thought for a few about how big one should be.
Thought about what would happen if I tried to cull it down to the people who would be crushed if I died.
Yeah, I know that is an extreme thought and that some will say that is just crazy.
But it is almost Rosh Hashanah and every year about this time I start thinking about Unetaneh Tokef.
You don’t have to believe in G-d or a book of life to engage in introspection. You don’t have to do anything other than read the news and keep your eyes open.
Every year there are natural disasters and every year I hear about a tragic death.
Sometimes those are things or people that I know and the impact is immediate and sometimes it is removed.
I like taking time to ask myself if I am living the kind of life I want to live and to think about what changes I do or don’t want to make.
Is my job serving and satisfying my needs?
Are the people I associate with helping or hindering me?
Are they disappointing me?
Am I disappointing them?
I make changes based upon those answers not because I want blessings or validations from a higher power or other people but because life is short and I want to make the most of it.
Some people are good at fooling themselves, I am not.
More on this in a different post at a different time.
I am not sharing the video below for religious purposes or trying to convince anyone to adopt any of my religious practices.
It is here because it came out around 10 years ago and it helps to illustrate the point about things happening.
To me it is a reminder that every year we are going to read about a hurricane or fire killing people.
Every year we are going to hear about someone dying young.
The older I get the louder I hear the ticking of the clock so I am cognizant of trying to use my time.